Around the web: Texas news edition

A roundup of Texas-related news that wouldn’t necessarily make it on the blog, but is worth noting:

• And who says the Legislature’s ability to amuse isn’t what it once was? We’re facing crises or impending crises over the budget, water, and electricity deregulation, but what’s on the mind of a trio of House members? Secession! (And it worked so well the last time, too.) The Texas Observer reports that Reps. Brandon Creighton (R-Conroe), Bryan Hughes (R-Marshall) and Leo Berman (R-Tyler) sponsored a resolution to claim sovereignty for Texas from federal mandates not specifically named in the U.S. Constitution.

• Know all those great smoking ban discussions we’ve had? Get ready for some more. Smoking ban advocates have convinced the Texas Restaurant Association, the most powerful opponent of smoking bans, to come over to their side. The restaurant trade group would apparently prefer a single, statewide ban rather than the hodgepodge of local ordinances now in effect.

• You can call your former spouse nasty names and not necessairly violate your divorce decree, says the Texas Supreme Court. Its ruling struck down an 18-month jail sentence given an ex-wife who had sent 84 e-mails mocking her ex-husband’s weight, his sexual prowess and his new wife. Under the terms of the divorce decree, both sides were to abstain from "vulgar and otherwise offensive language." The Supreme Court said the actions did not warrant jail time.



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